MERRY EARLY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!
Did you ever have any unique Christmas traditions in your family? I love being able to look back and reminisce about “Christmasses” long past. There is one particular Christmas memory that comes to mind when I think about my family’s celebrations. Each year my Father and Mother would do what they could to make sure the emphasis for the season was on Jesus. Sure, we had decorations revolving around Santa, reindeer, gifts, and lights, but my parents always stressed that Christmas was primarily a time to remember and to specially recognize the birth of Jesus the Christ.
So to further keep this focus, each year one of my parents would go to a local bakery and pre-order a cake for us to have after our Christmas dinner. They would instruct the baker to write with icing, “HAPPY BIRTHDAY JESUS,” and when we were all ready after our Christmas meal, we would get together and sing Happy Birthday to Jesus.
Now, as a little boy, I would of course just sing right along with everyone, but in the back of my little boy brain I would be wondering why we weren’t giving Jesus a slice of cake! I mean, if it were MY birthday and all of my friends and family bought be a cake and sang to me, but didn’t let me have any of my own cake, I might feel just a bit left out! Haha!
But as I got to be a little older I began to realize just how special this simple celebration was. Yes, we ate Jesus’ cake; but we stopped in the middle of our family’s regular celebration to take a break aside to remember the Christ. And do you know what it’s called when someone is intentional about recognizing, remembering, and honoring Jesus?
IT’S CALLED WORSHIP!
So often, many of us (the church, the people) fail to remember that worship need not wait until the weekend. And it does not necessarily involve singing (although we did sing happy birthday to Jesus), and it does not even necessarily involve speaking. Worship is whatever we are doing when we recognize, remember, honor, and magnify God the Father, God the Spirit, and God the Son.
In some way, in the middle of YOUR family’s celebrations this Christmas, I challenge you to make it a goal of yours to worship Jesus the Christ.